Wednesday, December 31, 2008

2008 Year in Review

Its that time of year when all the "Best of" lists come out. So after realizing I never got around to doing a recap of the season and because I'm admittedly a bit of a sucker for these types of silly, subjective, and ultimately meaningless lists, I figured I would make one of my own... Enjoy!

Most Painful race of the year: FL70.3
A beach start is always rough but in this race it was the easiest part. The literal pain in the butt began after only 20 minutes into the ride. Likely caused by a tight piriformis, I had the joy of experiencing a numb left leg the entire rest of the race. The uncomfortable situation was only worsened by the rain which began about halfway through the bike ride. Finally, a hot, sandy run capped the unusually uncomfortable racing experience.

Worst Performance of the year: Chattanooga Waterfront Tri
What happens when you try to do an Olympic distance race after taking a week off and radically changing your bike position? That’s right, the worst performance of the year. Incidentally, I make the “performance” distinction because the race venue was quite nice. It was just my personal showing (slow swim, terrible bike, mediocre run) which wasn’t.

Best Race of the Year: South Carolina Half
Although this race was a late edition to the schedule, it ended up being what I consider my best race of the year. After coming out of the water 2nd, I moved into first on the bike with the 2nd best bike split of the day and finished the race off with the fastest run of the day. Additionally, I had my highest normalized power on the bike for a half IM. Breaking the course record was just icing on the cake.

Biggest Blowup: ITU LD World Championships
This epic race started with a long, cold, brutal swim. The beginning of the bike ride went well… a little too well. The fast pace and not quite enough calories would eventually catch up to me about 105k into the 120k ride forcing me to struggle to finish the ride. This didn’t bode well for the 30k “run” which followed and resulted in an incredibly pathetic run split and overall finish time.

Most Enjoyable Race of the Year: Huntsville Sprint Triathlon
You can’t beat a race that starts a mile from your apartment on your birthday. This was the case with the Huntsville Sprint this year. After sleeping in my own bed before riding to the start, I lead from start to finish and thoroughly enjoyed the rest of the day.

Best Venue: Mountain Lakes Sprint (Guntersville)
The transition area for this race is a beautiful park on the shores of Lake Guntersville. Not only is the lake there for post race activities but there is a pool with a slide as well. Impeccable weather and the proximity to Huntsville didn’t hurt any, either.

Best Atmosphere: USAT Collegiate Nationals
Collegiate Nationals is always provides the elements for a great party. But through in Qdoba for post-race food, picturesque weather, a college town, and Olympic Trials and you really couldn’t have asked for much more.